Monday, 25 October 2010

UK Music Tuesday: Elton John's Favourites

This week Elton John shares his favourite new British acts with UK Music Tuesday as he prepares to release a new album with 1970s Boogie Rock and Blues legend Leon Russell. A renowned music connoisseur, if you want to know who has caught the Rocket Man's ear, read on...

But before we turn to his tips for future success, when the likes of Elton John refer to a musician as their "idol", it's worth investigating the issue. "The Union", released on October 25, is the fruit of a collaboration between Elton John and Leon Russell that picks up 40 years after the two men first worked together, at a point when Leon had already played with everyone from Herb Alpert to The Rolling Stones. "It's not often that you get the opportunity to work with your idol, or to make a record with him," explains Elton. "I decided to make a record with him because I thought he had been ignored for too long and he was my idol in the late 1960s and early 1970s."

Even a cursory listen to Leon's vocals on single "If It Wasn't For Bad" exposes the shared musical DNA between the two artists, and as committed Elton John fans -- "Yellow Brick Road" definitely makes the all-time Top 5 round these parts -- UK Music Tuesday is keen to hear more from "The Union". But to learn what is currently catching Elton John's ear from the UK, see below:

"Plan B has made probably the album of the year – it’s the album I have played most this year," enthuses Elton. "It’s an extraordinary record considering that the album he made before this was a rap record."

"I could not believe this girl’s voice," he says of Rumer. "Just extraordinary… a beautiful voice. They don’t come along that often and then you get one that comes along like Rumer’s and she’s going to be a huge star. In England we seem to be capable of bringing these singers out, like Adele, Duffy and Amy Winehouse. Lily Allen is another one. People with extraordinary voices..."

On which note, UK Music Tuesday is going to leave you to enjoy the music. Huge thanks to Elton John for effortlessly linking 1970 and 2010 and providing numerous jumping off points for musical discovery here on YouTube. Even a simple search for Leon Russell surfaces some incredible footage.

Have fun,

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Leon Russell & Friends -- Honky Tonk Woman".

Monday, 18 October 2010

Musicians Wanted: Now Worldwide

Earlier this year we announced the US launch of the YouTube Partner Programme (YPP) for Musicians, aka Musicians Wanted. Today we are happy to reveal that the initiative has been extended to more territories, offering independent acts from Sweden to New Zealand the opportunity to make money from their YouTube uploads.

Users in Canada, France, Ireland, The Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, the UK, Sweden, The Czech Republic, Argentina and New Zealand now have the opportunity to apply for the ability to serve ads alongside their work and collect a share of the revenues created. Here is a recap on on the programme from YouTube musician extraordinaire Jack Conte and singer Nataly Dawn (aka Pomplamoose):

So, if you are a musician based in any of the territories listed above – or if you’re based in the US and haven’t done so yet – head to the sign-up page and register for the programme. After all, you’ve got nothing to lose and potentially a whole lot to gain.

Have fun,

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched “Professor Green: The Next 48 Hours”.

Friday, 15 October 2010

YouTube Play: Live From The Guggenheim

Next week the YouTube Play jury will announce the top 25 videos that it selected from the 23,000 submissions received. We’re busy working with the Guggenheim to make sure that this announcement is like no other. Right now we can’t tell you who those 25 are, but we can tell you a little about the event we’re going to throw to celebrate it.

YouTube Play: Live From The Guggenheim will be a live streamed event featuring music, collaborations, eye-popping projections and, of course, the most creative video. If you’re in New York, you can catch some of the projections on the fa├žade of the building on the night of October 21. If you’re not, then head to on October 21 to catch the event live, starting at 1 a.m. (BST).

So who’s going to be there? Here’s a sneak peek of our lineup:

OK Go: The Chicago-based four-piece have torn up the rulebook with their music videos, picking up a Grammy and tens of millions of views in the process. "This Too Shall Pass" is in the YouTube Play shortlist.

Kutiman: "ThruYOU" was named one of Time Magazine’s top 50 best inventions for 2009, and is also in the shortlist. Kutiman shot to fame by compiling musical elements from across YouTube; at the Guggenheim, he’ll be choreographing a unique live collaboration.

Michael Showalter: The MC for the evening is also the star of Comedy Central’s Michael and Michael Have Issues, has a hit online with’s The Michael Showalter Showalter, and used to be on The Daily Show.

That’s it for now. You’re going to have to head to on the night to find out who made the top 25 and what things really look like when YouTube meets the Guggenheim.

Tom Pursey, Product Marketing Manager, recently watched "Tom Waits Theme For Iron Man 2 (Rejected)".

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

The YouTube Symphony Orchestra Returns!

The world’s first online collaborative orchestra is back, and this time a new round of performers will be playing their part onstage at the iconic Sydney Opera House.

It seems like just yesterday that Carnegie Hall was abuzz with a sold-out performance that made headlines around the globe. Ninety-six musicians arrived in New York City, from over 30 countries, to perform together after uploading an audition video and then being chosen by the YouTube community to be a part of the exciting event. We are thrilled to invite you to audition for the YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011.

In addition to the new locale, this “second act” includes another new element: “Mothership,” a musical work from composer Mason Bates. Right now, it’s still missing something: an improvisation provided by you. Take a listen to it here and start planning your contribution.

This time there are two ways to audition, for the classical audition perform the pieces listed on the channel according to instrument. For the opportunity to contribute your own creation, choose the solo improviser—it doesn’t matter if you play trumpet, viola or didgeridoo. If you proceed to the final stages, you will join musicians from around the world in a week-long music summit with Grammy-award-winning conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, who returns to guide the orchestra.

The YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011 is a collaboration with partners the Sydney Symphony, the London Symphony Orchestra, Berliner Philharmoniker and many other leading institutions of the classical music world. This event is being made possible by Hyundai.

Michele Flannery, Music Manager, recently watched “Eucalyptus Didgeridoo Solo

Monday, 11 October 2010

UK Music Tuesday: Marina At The Controls

Today we are pleased to turn over UK Music Tuesday to Marina And The Diamonds. A sly, bright presence in a Pop environment that can seem more nakedly packaged than ever, she has pulled together a playlist that is both heavy on quality and a smart shapshot of the genuine span of a genre that clearly fascinates and inspires her.

Since signing up to YouTube in July 2008, Marina has generated an impressive 18 million clicks from just 12 uploads, with "Hollywood" tipping the scales at a mighty 6.2 million hits. "YouTube has become kind of the voice of the people of our generation," she explains. "You have changed Pop Culture, the way that music labels work and the way that artists work. You've given artists who aren't necessarily signed a way to show people they are talented."

Her playlist places Madonna, Dolly Parton and Garbage are alongside the likes of Nirvana, Royksopp and Eminem, with less established acts like The Hundred In The Hands, Euro-Pop wonder Alizee and the perenially overlooked Robyn making cameo appearances. Hear her talk through her curation here:

It is always a pleasure to see how artists choose to approach putting together UK Music Tuesday playlists and Marina has been no exception. While clearly a Pop artist, her approach -- echoing many of the acts she lists above -- manages to be fresh while remaining somehow familiar. We wish her luck with the release of her debut album, "Family Jewels", and look forward to tracking her career here on YouTube.

Have fun,

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Marina And The Diamonds -- I Am Not A Princess".

Saturday, 9 October 2010

John Lennon: Join The Birthday Salute

Today we join Yoko Ono in asking fans around the world to upload video tributes to John Lennon on what would have been his 70th birthday.

If you have memories to share of this legendary member of the Beatles and his music, upload a video to and you’ll join a global chorus that includes Aerosmith, Jeff Bridges, Jonas Brothers, Ringo Starr, and YouTube Community members like Goh Nakamura and DJ Mike Relm.

As part of today’s celebration, you may have noticed a special YouTube logo that’s being featured in 24 different countries highlighting the artist’s famous self-portrait. This unique artwork is also part of a birthday video that you can find at It’s the very first time that a YouTube video has been embedded into a one-of-a-kind Google Doodle — read a message from artist who created it here.

“Spread Peace. Imagine Peace.” is how Yoko suggests you celebrate the day, along with sharing your video tribute with the world.

Michele Flannery, Music Manager, recently watched Plastic Ono Band - “Give Peace A Chance”